Shwe Mann and 16 others sacked
YANGON • Myanmar's former ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) has sacked 17 senior members.
They include Mr Shwe Mann, the former acting party chairman and former speaker of the Union Parliament and House of Representatives, local media reported yesterday. Along with Mr Shwe Mann, other senior USDP members removed include Mr Maung Maung Thein, Mr San Shwe Aung, Mr Ko Ko Naing, Mr Zaw Myint Pe, Mr Thein Zaw and Thura U Aung Ko.
Mr Shwe Mann is currently leading a 35-member advisory review commission to the new Union Parliament formed on March 1, handling legal affairs and special cases, while Thura U Aung Ko is Minister of Religious Affairs and Culture with the new government.
Taiwan protests Japan boat seizure
TAIPEI • Taiwan has protested to Japan after one of its fishing boats was seized early yesterday in an area where Tokyo claims exclusive economic rights.
The 50-tonne Tung Sheng Chi 16 was chased for hours by a Japanese boat and finally seized 150 nautical miles off Okinotori-shima, an atoll administered by Japan.
"As the water around Okinotori-shima is disputed, Japan's seizure of the Taiwanese fishing boat is unacceptable," said Taiwan Foreign Ministry spokesman Eleanor Wang. "We've filed a solemn protest to Japan, demanding the release as soon as possible of the ship and its crew."
Company slammed for polluting sea
HANOI • Taiwanese conglomerate Formosa was under attack in Vietnam's state media yesterday over allegations of industrial pollution leaching from a multibillion-dollar steel mill that may have caused mysterious mass fish deaths. Tonnes of dead fish, including rare species that live far offshore and in the deep, have been washing up on beaches along the country's central coast, causing public alarm and hurting local fishermen.
State-run media coverage has focused on a 1.5km waste water pipeline which runs directly from Formosa's plant in Ha Tinh into the sea.